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Rennae Gruchalla, Fargo, Published April 30 2013

Letter: Let’s protect Arctic refuge

The Arctic is all around us. Every year, birds that begin their life on the Coastal Plain of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge journey to all 50 states and across six continents before heading back to the Arctic, where the cycle of life begins again. This cycle of life has been repeated for thousands of years. Drilling for oil in the refuge will upset this cycle of life. Do not allow greed to destroy this pristine area.

Right now, snow geese migrating back to the refuge can be seen across North Dakota and will return in the fall for our hunters to have a good hunt. The Arctic is the origin of life for more than just birds. Numerous species of mammals have their young on this vast expanse of tundra, including polar bears, caribou, wolves and grizzly bears. The pristine picture painted above should not be spoiled.

The Arctic National Wildlife Refuge was set aside more than 50 years ago by President Dwight Eisenhower, and today remains a wilderness icon of our National Refuge system. I may never get a chance to visit this special place, but know that I want it to be protected. Let’s leave a lasting legacy for our children and grandchildren.